67. The Silence
She was ill and he wanted to go to her, to sit with her in silence, to read her stories, to watch DVDs together. But there was a mountain between them and though he knew he could brave the peaks, there was a guard at the gate and he didn’t know the answer to the riddle that was posed.
And so he wrote her a story, pinned it to the legs of a carrier pigeon and released it into the air. But it didn’t know the way or maybe the story slipped on the way there. He didn’t know how but he knew that she was there, alone, in bed, in silence. And that her story was lost along the way.
And so he asked the guard again and the guard replied
“You soar when you fall
When you don’t fall, you fracture.”
And he tries hard to understand but a fog has fallen and he’s lost his way while pacing for the answer. and so he returns home by dead reckoning. Once there he sits at his Remington typewriter and tries to remember the story he had pinned to the pigeon. He thinks of a line and as he hits a key, instead of typeface striking the page, a bread crumb ricochets back at him, hitting him in the face. Oblivious, he continues to type until he’s up to his knees in crumble and crumb.
“Damn the mountain, damn the silence,” he thinks. And he falls into bed wishing it would all just go away. And he closes his eyes. And he prays himself to sleep.